“The X Factor” U.K. 2006 winner Leona Lewis has now publicly confirmed that she is dating One Direction’s Liam Payne. Lewis and Payne began dating in September 2012, shortly after the end of two-year relationships with their former significant others.
Even though Lewis, 27, once said that she would never talk to the media or to fans about her relationship with Payne, 19, she changed her mind by commenting to The Sun about what it’s been like to date Payne: “You’d be surprised how much we have in common. He’s great. We see each other when we can. It’s very flattering to get things like that. It’s cute. I’m having fun and enjoying myself. If you have a bond with someone, age doesn’t come into it. I’d date someone younger or older — it doesn’t matter to me. Or looks, really — it’s all about maturity.”
One Direction came in third place on “The X Factor” U.K. in 2010. Before Payne dated Lewis, he was in a two-year relationship with 24-year-old dancer Danielle Peazer, whom he met when they were on “The X Factor” U.K.
Payne and Peazer had lived together for less than year when they broke up in September 2012. Although neither has publicly commented on why they broke up, several sources have said it was due to Payne’s demanding work schedule and the harassment that Peazer would experience from jealous One Direction fans. Insiders say that Peazer was the one who dumped Payne, and she wants to have a more private life than what she had when she was dating Payne.
A busy work schedule is also said to be the reason why Lewis split from 23-year-old dancer Dennis Jauch, who dated Lewis for two years. Their relationship ended around the same time that Payne and Peazer’s relationship ended.
For years, Payne has been saying in interviews that Lewis has been his biggest celebrity crush.
Before One Direction came along, Lewis was the biggest worldwide star to emerge from “The X Factor.” Payne and Lewis are also represented by the same management company (Modest! Management, which is based in London) and are signed to the same record company (Syco Music, the record label co-owned by Simon Cowell and Sony Music). One Direction and Lewis were each mentored by Cowell on “The X Factor” U.K. when he was a judge on the show.
Lewis and One Direction also have new albums out in 2012. Lewis’ third album, “Glassheart,” was released in Europe in October 2012. (The North American release date for “Glassheart” is to be announced.) One Direction’s second album, “Take Me Home,” was released worldwide in November 2012, and it has debuted at No. 1 in several countries.
November 26, 2012 update: Payne went on Twitter to deny that he and Lewis are dating. Click here for more details.
December 6, 2012 update: Payne and Peazer have reunited. (Click here for more details.) A source told Radar Online: “Leona and Liam have been friends for nearly two years, so when they were both single they took their relationship to the next level. Dennis was always wary of Leona’s friendship with Liam – so when she started dating Liam she must knew it would hit a nerve. She split with Dennis because she felt she was under-appreciated and wanted him to propose. It was a careful plan on her part. And, sure enough, when Dennis came calling again, she dumped Liam after a month and went straight back into his arms. Liam was gutted.”
May 5, 2013 update: Payne and Peazer broke up again. Click here for more details.